Are Creative Producers The Leaders of The Free (Ad)World?
Today, being a good producer isn’t just about being a highly-organised individual who has knowledge of the best talent and how to budget for it. A good producer now has to bring value and choice to a production to make it successful. Rightly, every brand wants value for money and the best creative output they can afford. Having the skill to achieve both is rare - and the talent who can provide them aren’t easy to come by.
Our industry is being thrust into the path of so many new and exciting content opportunities that are seeing brand, agency and production models continue to evolve and adapt with the changing communications landscape. A myriad of new production models have emerged as a result. It’s not just agencies that have direct access to the client anymore; now production companies, post production and even media channels themselves are working on productions direct for commercial clients. Equally, the rise of in-house production within agencies (and in-house agency and production within brands), means that brands don’t necessarily have to venture externally at all before they get to the finished product.
However, amongst the many variables that can form a production, there is a constant alongside the producer: cost control.
The rise of cost control has changed things. Most producers sigh that the majority of jobs today are heavily procured, essentially limiting creative output. Yet, this doesn’t scare the most innovative and experienced among us. Our secret weapon? Choice. A well-seasoned producer will use choice to their advantage to avoid depleting the all-important creative resources. And by ‘choice’ we don’t only mean ‘who’, we mean ‘how’. A creative producer will leave no stone unturned when it comes to looking at how we get a job from A to B. There are so many options available to brands and agencies when it comes to production and producers should be taking advantage of them.
Choice is now a vital resource to achieving that ‘golden triangle’ of time, cost and quality that has always seemed impossible. Let’s face it, creative people perform best when there aren’t shackles, so being able to navigate the open creative market is key to ensuring no limits are put on creative ambitions.
The value comes into it because competitive bidding has never been sharper or keener. We face a financially turbulent time in our industry which is consistently driving down prices. If you know where to look, you can always be confident in achieving value. That’s not to say that the speed and value of in-house production isn’t relevant to some projects but that an experienced creative producer can just as easily yield the same speed and value from the independent market - with added creative choice.
Whilst the industry continues to battle against increasing scrutiny over budgets and speed of delivery, a creative producer with the right experience can be invaluable to retaining quality. When everything is up in the air, they can bring it all back down to earth in style - and with no time wasted. Whilst this era in production may be challenging it is also amazingly refreshing. It’s time for us to throw off the shackles and make a head first run at the amazing talent and innovative processes available to us. It is our time to shine!
Tim Page & Jody Allison are Producers & Co-Founders of Heads Up Production
Genre: People , Strategy/Insight